Faculty Seminar Advisor

Patricia Goldsworthy-Bishop

Department

History

Document Type

Paper

Publication Date

Spring 2016

Abstract

German author W. G. Sebald (1944-2001) studied how historical methodology contributed to this alienation of various groups, particularly World War II Germans, and the consequences of that alienation so that he could develop and use historical countermeasures in his own writing. Sebald’s unique approach advocated for a genre of history that moved beyond narratives of nations, eras, victims, and perpetrators to promote constructive discussions with an awareness of their relevance to the present. Sebald’s refusal to ignore any part of the past resulted in his life-long study of what he called a conspiracy of silence in Germany, regarding the destruction of World War II and the Holocaust, a concept that reached the international multi-century scale in his popular and scholarly works.

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